My book, A Coyote Who Wished He Lived in a Zoo, is dedicated to Zookeepers. The book talks about the good things that zoo's do for animals, and the importance of having them. Zookeepers are very dedicated to helping the animals they care for. They think of each animal as their own, and makes sure they do what ever they can to help them.
Zookeepers do much more than just clean up after the animals. They have gone to school to learn a great deal about the animals they care for. Zookeepers can help make animals more comfortable living in captivity. With the knowledge and experience handling the animals, they understand their needs, behavior, and their homes in the wild.
Zookeepers help make animals well when they are sick. They observe them everyday to make sure they are happy and healthy. They keep a record on how much an animal eats. If they notice the animal isn't eating properly, they will take it to the zoo animal hospital to see what is wrong. Zookeepers help the veterinarians by giving the animals the special care they need to help them get well again.
Just like people, animals sometimes get bored. The keepers give the animals special toys which help keep them physically and mentally active. This is called, Enrichment. Enrichment also helps the animals learn skills they would need to use in order to survive in the wild. The zookeepers sometimes make animals made out of paper mache'. They fill it with special treats and put it in the exhibit. The animal will then check out the paper mache' animal and try to get the food out of it. This helps them use their hunting skills.
Zookeeper's work in very harsh temperatures. Since animals need to eat every day, Zookeepers have to go to the zoo during bad snow storms and freezing temperatures. Sometimes, they will put up a cot, and spend the night at the zoo to make sure they will be there to take care of the animals.
Zookeepers help to educate people about animals. They sometimes have Keeper Chats where they can talk about the behavior, and care of the animals. During these chats, the people may be able to see an animal up close. This helps connect people with the animal. When people learn about animals, they like to help them. They can adopt an animal and help share the care for them in the adoption programs. Zookeepers help put together fundraising events for animals. People can help animals in the wild by attending these events, or donating to wildlife organizations.
Be sure to thank a Zookeeper this week. If you can't make it to the zoo, you can go to the American Association of Zookeepers facebook page and thank a keeper.
When you purchase my book, A Coyote Who Wished He Lived in a Zoo, on Smile Amazon, a portion of the proceeds can go to the American Association of Zookeepers of your choice. Most zoo's have their own chapter. For example, if you want the donation to go to the Brookfield Zoo keepers, click the link and type in Brookfield Zoo and the American Association of Zookeepers will come up with Brookfield next to the select button. Then type in my name or book title in the search bar. It's that easy.
Be sure to thank a zookeeper today.